Marine Biology Programs 

The evening programs of the Marine Biology Section are held from January through April and September through December on the second Thursday of each month at 7:30 p.m. at the Unitarian Centre, 949 49th Ave W (49th at Oak), Vancouver. These programs are open to the public and members are encouraged to invite their friends. For more information and suggestions for future programs please contact the Program Co-ordinator Joan Lopez at 604-682-1617.

Thursday, September 14
Ocean Optimism
Dr. Elin Kelsey

Dr. Kelsey is an educator, researcher, thesis supervisor and award-winning author. She conducts researcher into the emotional responses to the culture of "doom & gloom" that permeates environmental issues. Dr. Kelsey has taught at Royal Roads University since 2003. 

Thursday, October 12
Parastic Infection: a missing piece of the ocean acidification puzzle
Dr. Colin MacLeod

Dr. MacLeod is a postdoctoral fellow at the University of British Columbia, working on the combined effect of ocean acidification and parastic infection on marine invertebrates.

Thursday, November 9
Acoustic Communication in Belugas: A Sound-centered Species in Today's Noisy World
Dr. Valeria Vergara

Dr. Valeria Vergara has been eavesdropping on whales for years! From the Vancouver Aquarium to Hudson Bay, from the Canadian Arctic to the St. Lawrence Estuary, researcher Valeria Vergara has listened to the communication sounds made by belugas in diverse environments. She is primarily interested in the communicative and perceptual abilities of marine mammals, and the conservation implications of such capacities. She directs and coordinates field studies on beluga whales through the Marine Mammal Research Program at the Vancouver Aquarium. 

Valeria Vergara's ground-breaking doctorate research at the University of British Columbia was the first to document how beluga calves develop their rich repertoire of vocalizations and to identify contact calls critical for maintaining cohesion within the group and mother-calf contact. Her studies allow her to address the problems that this sound-centered species faces in an increasingly noisy environment.